The 1916 Battle of the Somme Reconsidered

The 1916 Battle of the Somme Reconsidered

by Peter Liddle

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Overview

Twenty-four years after the publication of his classic study of the Somme, Peter Liddle reconsiders the battle in the light of recent scholarship. The battle still gives rise to fierce debate and, with Passchendaele, it is often seen as the epitome of the tragic folly of the First World War. But is this a reasoned judgment? Peter Liddle, in this authoritative study, reexamines the concept and planning of the operation and follows the course of the action through the entire four and a half months of the fighting.

His narrative is based on the graphic testimony of the men engaged in the struggle, not just concentrating on the front-line infantryman but also the gunner, sapper, medical man, airman and yes, the nurse, playing her crucial role behind the line of battle. The reader is privileged in getting a direct insight into how those who were there coped with the extraordinary, often prolonged, stress of the experience and maintained to a remarkable degree a level of morale adequate for what had to be endured.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781783400515
Publisher: Pen and Sword
Publication date: 08/05/2016
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.70(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Dr Peter Liddle is a leading historian of the First World War and has concentrated on the personal experience of the men and women who took part. He founded the Liddle Collection, a repository of documents and memorabilia connected to the conflict, which is housed in the Brotherton Library, the University of Leeds. His many books include Captured Memories 1900-1918, Captured Memories 1930-1945, The Soldiers War 1914-1918, The Gallipoli Experience Reconsidered, The 1916 Battle of the Somme Reconsidered and, as editor, Facing Armageddon, Britain Goes to War and Britain and the Widening War.

Contributors: Holger Afflerbach, Phylomena Badsey, Niall Barr, Chris Bellamy, Nick Bosanquet, Peter Burness, George Cassar, Tim Cook, Irene Guerrini, Clive Harris, Kate Kennedy, Ross Kennedy, William Philpott, Marco Pluviano, Chris Pugsley, Duncan Redford, Matthew Richardson, Alan Sharp, Yigal Sheffy, Jack Sheldon, Edward Spiers, David Welch, Ian Whitehead

Table of Contents

List of Plates vi

Maps viii

Acknowledgements ix

Foreword xi

Introduction: The Somme, Our Heritage 1

Chapter 1 The Battle of the Somme: Concept, Planning and Preparation 17

Chapter 2 The First of July 38

Chapter 3 After the First Day: July to Early September 74

Chapter 4 The Fifteenth of September: A New Major Effort and a New Weapon 92

Chapter 5 Through October into November and a 'Slough Of Despond' 109

Chapter 6 A Verdict 123

Notes 154

Bibliography 158

Personal Experience Documentation 161

Official Nomenclature for the Battle of the Somme and its Subsidiary Actions 164

Army, Corps and Divisional Unit Involvement in the Battle of the Somme, 1 July-18 November 1916 166

Order of Batik, 1 July 1916 170

Index 176

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